The Basics of Dental Bonding
The purpose of dental bonding is restoring or improving a person’s smile. The procedure involves applying a specially made resin material made from durable plastic, to the teeth. Once it has hardened it will bond to the tooth. The tooth colored resin is specially designed to look natural so one’s smile is enhanced.
When is dental bonding a consideration?
There can be quite a few reasons for a dental professional to consider dental bonding. It is a cosmetic procedure, but that does not mean that it is not a necessary procedure in some instance. Dental bonding may be a choice for instance such as:
- Repairing decayed teeth (the resin is used to fill in a cavity)
- Repairing a tooth that is chipped or cracked
- Improving the color and appearance of discolored teeth
- Closing in spaces or gaps between teeth
- Making teeth appear longer (a visual improvement)
- Changing the shape of the teeth
- Using it as an alternative for amalgam fillings (cosmetic reasons)
- Protecting part of an exposed tooth root
What is involved in the dental bonding procedure?
Preparation – You really don’t need to do anything to prepare for this type of dental procedure. However, the dentist will need to create a resin that closely matches the natural color of your teeth. They do not usually need any form of anesthesia unless the procedure is being done in order to fill in a decayed tooth.
Actual Bonding Process – Once the dentist has the resin the right shade, he will prepare the surface of the tooth by roughening it and conditioning it. Making the surface of the tooth rough gives the resin something to adhere to and will make it a stronger bond. He will then apply the putty-like material to the tooth. Once it is on the tooth it will still need to be molded, or shaped, and smoothed to get the desired look. The substance will be hardened by using a laser or an ultraviolet light. Once it has hardened properly, the dentist will trim it to get it into the perfect shape. Once he achieves the desired look, he will polish it so it has a sheen that matches the rest of your teeth.
How long the process takes – In most cases, dental bonding will take between 30 and 60 minutes for each tooth.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Dental Bonding
The advantages of dental bonding is that it is a simple procedure and one of the least expensive cosmetic procedures. It can be completed in just one visit unlike crowns and veneers that have to be created in a lab. The procedure also removes very little, if any enamel and unless it is done to fill in a cavity, it does not require anesthesia.
The disadvantages of dental bonding include the fact that the material is not as resistant to stains as crowns. It will resist stains somewhat, just not as well as other materials. Bonding materials also do not last as long as other restorative measures since it is not as strong.